Life Time health clubs have decided the news these days isn’t exactly healthy for its clients.
So it’s “Hardball” out, HGTV in.
The Minnesota-based chain has stopped showing MSNBC, CNN, Fox News and CNBC on the big-screen TVs at its 127 clubs across the country, the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal reports.
The company implemented the change at the beginning of the year.
The channels were dumped in response to “many member requests received over time across the country, and in keeping with our overall healthy way of life philosophy and commitment to provide family oriented environments free of consistently negative or politically charged content,” Life Time spokeswoman Natalie Bushaw said in a statement to the St. Paul Pioneer Press and other local news outlets.
The TVs in the clubs “now air USA, A&E, Discovery and HGTV, in addition to local stations and ESPN,” she told the Pioneer Press.
Clubs also have the flexibility to air programs of interest to their local markets, such as college and pro sporting events, she told the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
The ban is getting mixed response. Critics point out that the audio on TVs set up in front of workout machines can only be heard through earphones anyway.
“As someone who enjoys consuming news and politics, I’m disappointed that Life Time is limiting this option for members,” Life Time member Peter Glessing told the Star Tribune.
“I often time my workout to a particular news program I enjoy to serve as an extra motivation for exercising.”
But another person on the Star Tribune’s Facebook page wrote that it’s “really frustrating to watch the news while you’re trying to work out and have to be distracted by everything, especially if you already stay informed and are working out to release stress and tension.”